Thursday, December 3, 2009 12:00 AM
FLORENCE, KY . . . December 3, 2009 . . . The $50,000 My Charmer Stakes at Turfway Saturday has attracted 11 fillies and mares, some looking to translate turf experience to Polytrack and others already proven on all-weather surfaces.
Shipping from Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland, trainer Graham Motion entered two for the 1 1/16-mile My Charmer, both restricted stakes winners. Seven-year-old Miss Lombardi has been off October 21, when she finished sixth after uncharacteristically setting the pace in the Athenia Stakes (G3) at Belmont. That race was her first off a two-month rest after winning a mile turf allowance at Penn National. Though her last six starts have been on turf, she has two wins in two starts on all-weather tracks and has been training on the Tapeta surface at Fair Hill. Jeremy Rose comes in to ride.
Amie's Legend also trains on Fair Hill's Tapeta but has never raced on an all-weather surface nor won on turf. All three of her wins have come on dirt, including the Shine Again Stakes at Pimlico in the spring. In eight starts this year, trying dirt and turf, she has two wins, three seconds—one a half-length loss on turf—and a third. She comes in to the My Charmer off a third-place finish in the All Brandy Stakes over a sealed track at Laurel Park. East Coast rider Joseph Rocco Jr. will be aboard.
Exotic Bloom finished fifth in an optional allowance on the dirt at Churchill last out but her best work has come on all-weather tracks. She won the Windward Stakes at Presque Isle, is graded-stakes placed at Woodbine, and won at Keeneland in the spring. She is 4-2-2 in 10 starts on all-weather surfaces. Frederick Seitz trains, with Miguel Mena to ride.
Coulee has seven wins, a second, and two thirds in 17 starts on all-weather surfaces and steps up to stakes competition for the first time in her 31-race career. She comes in to Saturday off two straight wins, the first a claiming race at Keeneland and the second an optional allowance race on the turf at Churchill. Her most recent work, last Saturday at Trackside, was a best-of-18 five furlongs in 1:00.60. Rodney Prescott rides for trainer John Booker.
Danzon tops the field in earnings with $384,533 in 21 starts, but she was winless in four starts in 2008, well-beaten in three graded stakes, and given a year off. She returned to win her first start back, the Kentucky Cup Ladies' Turf in September, but then was eighth in her last start, the G1 First Lady on soft turf at Keeneland. Her lone start on Polytrack was a win in the Kentucky Cup Distaff two years ago. Israel Ocampo rides for trainer Kellyn Gorder.
Completing the field are Wellofaprize (jockey Larry Sterling Jr.); Celtic Princess, a Brazilian multi-stakes winner making her first start in two years and her first in the U.S. (Aldo Canchano); Irish Ridge (Larry Melancon); Seniga (Dean Mernagh); Alberta's Book (Fabio Arguello Jr.); and Zhou (John McKee).
The My Charmer is the 10th of 11 races on Saturday's card. First post is 1:10pm. Admission and parking are free.
Saturday also marks the last day of Camp Carr's Toys for Tots at Turfway, benefiting the Marine Corps' annual holiday drive. Cincinnati country radio station WUBE will be broadcasting live and the collection site will be staffed around the clock by members of the Marine Corps, DJ Chris Carr, and other WUBE staff members.